The middle of summer means the middle of PCS season for some military families. If you choose to travel by car, this mean an adventurous road trip is ahead. There’s plenty of perks to taking a road trip: more sightseeing, more family time, and the control of your own journey.

How to Plan the Perfect PCS Road Trip

Once the movers have your stuff, pack up the car, and head on out to your next duty station with these tips for the perfect PCS road trip.

Plan your route (but be flexible)
If you’ve got a time limit, plot out which city you’ll sleep in each night. Plan your driving time to be around eight hours or less per day, no more than that. Leave time for wanderlusting…


Pack a car charger for your phone or separate GPS. use technology to your advantage just in case you get lost. But as a backup, a good old fashioned map will help you out.

Choose your chariot

Make sure your vehicle is road ready and has plenty of space for passengers and luggage. Nothing dampens a road trip like car trouble does.

Set a budget

One thing you want to control is your spending. Determine a set amount for eating out and your excursions. You only get up to a certain amount of money from the military for PCS moves, so you don’t want to blow it on extravagances.

Pack lightly

Pack slightly more than what you need to make room for your new finds and treasures.

Don’t rely on streaming

If you are relying on 3G to power your kid’s shows or the car’s music, you may want to have a backup. Internet can be glitchy on the road.

Stop at photo ops

If you have time and it’s truly your desire, feel free to hit up those major tourist attractions. just be aware of potential crowds and lines. What I find more fun, it bypassing those attractions and hitting photo op spots: World’s Largest ________, World’s first______, this will give you more time to see other things (and also a great instagram picture).

Distract the easily distracted

Load up the music, movies, games, and snacks. They are your first line of defense when the whining starts.

Take the scenic routes

It may be tempting to take the fastest or more direct route, but taking the scenic route also has its advantages. If time is on your side, follow the signs to the scenic points of your road trip.

Use Technology

Look for apps that indicate the nearest great local restaurants, shops, gas stations (i.e. rest stops), and hotels.


What are your tips for a great PCS road trip?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Unilever & Operation in Touch via MSB New Media. The opinions and text are all mine.